It’s been two years since Super Junior has released their previous album, and fans are eagerly looking forward to their long-awaited comeback. They have previewed their eighth album, PLAY, with the release of a music video, titled “One More Chance” (also known as ‘Don’t Leave Like The Rain’ in Korean). Co-written by Donghae, the song shows off the team’s melodic voices and the song’s sentimental vibe succinctly.

“One More Chance” does well in displaying the strong vocals and maturity that the group has after being in the K-Pop industry for so long. Through their currently-airing webseries, SJ Returns, the Super Junior members were shown to be choosing this track precisely due to meaningful lyrics and emotive beats. It’s a pop-rock ballad that is accompanied by melodious vocals, with an aesthetically-pleasing music video. It’s safe to say that Super Junior pretty much nailed this pre-release, and has set high standards for the upcoming album.

With sad, but poetic, lyrics about the narrator missing a loved one, the vocals and rap work together to send across this melancholic message. The narrator’s love interest is consistently compared to rain, and how the rain eventually stops and goes away, just as the narrator fears his love will. The lyrics successfully emote how people we love can slip right out of our grasp, even if we try our best to keep them close to us. Just like sand in one’s fist, I suppose. Although sad, romantic ballads are not new or fresh, Super Junior’s grasp on emotions and ability to convey melancholy via the lyrics is what does the trick to bring this track to the next level. Eunhyuk’s self-written verse depicts these sentiments effectively, especially with the smooth delivery of his rap.

Even though I was in the rain, I liked it
Because they were traces you left behind.

Don’t go away like the rain.
Again today, I’m drenched
And in the wet traces, I’m looking for you.
Just one more chance so I could see you.

The music video accompanies the song and beats interestingly well. There is an amusing but compelling juxtaposition of the colourfulness of this music video and the melancholic feel of the actual song, which draws its viewers in. While there may not be a specific storyline that the music video follows, the choice of shots and direction of video plays a significant role in enhancing the vocals and feel of the song.

One of the key points would be the colours and lights, and the role they play in emphasising parts of the song. At the start of the ballad, the lyrics lean more towards reminiscing the love between a couple rather than wishing to get back together. As such, despite the pensive and sombre tone of the song, there is an inkling of hopefulness that underlies beneath it. This is cleverly depicted in the music video too.

In Heechul’s scene, for example, he is shown to be in a room that is primarily blue and red, with a few flickering TV screens that shine some light into the scene. There is general ambiance of concealed expectation of getting back together with the narrator’s love interest, and is also what Heechul’s verse is about:

Endless sighs become this song,
And without knowing, I’m coloured by you again.

However, at the end of the song, as the song progresses towards how the narrator realises he’ll never get the girl again, the colours fade. The TVs shut down. The blue from his scene is gone, and there’s only a little bit of red left. The flickering lights that come from the TV have faded away, just as the hope has in getting back together with his love. The intensity of the blue has died down, removing the colours that the narrator had gotten from his lover. What further highlights this is that only the exit sign is lit up, but the door itself is shut. This could be a way to say that even if they narrator wanted to move on, he couldn’t (because he found it difficult to).

In the same way, the use of shadows and fog also convey feelings of hopelessness and confusion astutely. At the beginning, there is little fog and haze. This gives off the feeling of there being more clarity in the situation, perhaps that the narrator is more confident in his quest to get back his love as he reminisces. Contrasting this towards the end of the music video, where fog and haze appear a lot more, and occupy more space in each frame, there is clear implication to the situation being more fuzzy. The ending scenes hint towards the loss of the narrator’s loved one, once again.

Maybe the symbolism presented by the doors in this music video is the most obvious. Yesung is shown to be opening multiple doors, only be to encountered with one last door that remains closed. The imagery of rain that accompanies Eunhyuk’s scenes is probably the most obvious literal visual aid that helps to carry the emotions of the song. Although the music video may not have much going, the clever use of visual devices and filmography elements have elevated the delivery of the song. Since this is just a pre-release, and not even the main track, it is pretty impressive.

On top of that, the refined style of instrumentals definitely elevates this pre-release. Donghae’s experience in production and writing songs definitely shows in “One More Chance”. The vocals of all the members fit in really well with the emotional rock ballad. Not only that, the soft beats in the background slowly build up, making the ending of the song climatic, leaving its listeners with an overall poignant impression of the song. It’s a well-delivered ballad with vocals, instrumentals and a music video that all complement each other. The all-rounded balance in every aspect of this pre-release has definitely brought up expectations of Super Junior’s eighth album.

Although Super Junior are known for their dance tracks with catchy choruses, “One More Chance” does a wonderful job in teasing the upcoming album. With the way that Super Junior has hit the nail with this track, I think I wouldn’t be wrong to say that their album would be one of the most anticipated albums this fall.

(V Live, Lyrics via Color Coded Lyrics, Images via SM Entertainment)